A class-action lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court of Southern New York by the American Medical Association (AMA.org) against United HealthCare ( United Healthcare) and affiliates for members who received or paid out-of-network fees for healthcare services.

The new suit makes both ‘subscribers’ and ‘providers’ eligible for payment of improper out-of-network fees that were applied to services from what it appears to be errors with United Medical Records (UMR, inc), Fiserv and Ingenix databases between March 15, 1994 and November 18, 2009.

Wow, 15 years of errors in fee calculations? How many people had to call and fight during this time for what was rightfully theirs, or even worse, wrongfully charged to them or providers?

There are 3 listed settlement options a subscriber ia eligible for through the suit. Now imagine this, you were wrongfully billed for services and did not have the funds to pay or were overwhelmed from a larger incidence and received several large bills.  Imagine someone lost a job, fell into debt, a local doctor forced out of business due to mounting fees or lack of funds received from patients who disputed this fees.

15 years to figure out there were errors being calculated that gave more money to United Healthcare than what was owed?  It makes me wonder – how much interest did United Healthcare make on these funds they should have never received in the first place? Not just a few years interest – but 15 years.

The settlement fund is already pre-allocated to USD $350 million. In 2009, United Healthcare’s profits were listed as $21 Billion – double that of 2008. UHC even managed to secure a large Military Healthcare Contract in July of 2009.  What’s wrong with this picture? Is this the type of behavior we want to see treating our military or becoming part of National Healthcare?